Whether you’re gaming or working, having the best computer monitor on your desk can make a huge difference. So we went out and found the top computer monitors for you, researching key features and customer sentiment to give you the big picture on this vital computer accessory. Then we bought the top 10 and tested them in real time in our own company and home computers to see which monitor is the best of them all.
During our testing, we measured features like adjustable stands, image quality and response times, among others. As we did our work, played games and watched Netflix on each of these monitors, a winner became clearly apparent in the LG 34UM69G-B 34″ Ultra Wide Monitor. This ultra-wide monitor has everything you for the most versatile monitor experience. With ultra-low response rates, an ultra-high resolution and sleek design, this monitor LG beat out everything else we tested. Keep reading to learn more about this display and our other top picks.
Top 5 Best Computer Monitors Compared
#1 LG 34UM69G-B 34″ Monitor
Award: Top Pick/Best Gaming
WHY WE LIKE IT: The LG 34UM69G-B gives you an ultra-wide viewing experience that’s perfect for gaming and work. You’ll also get a super fast response rate and AMD Free Sync functionality for an even smoother experience.
- Ultra widescreen display
- Super fast 1ms response rate
- AMD Free Sync
- Not a 4K HDR monitor
- Low 75 Hz refresh rate
- Only one HDMI port
If you’re interested in jumping on the widescreen monitor train, the LG 34UM69G-B is a computer monitor you won’t want to pass up. Measuring in at a whopping 34 inches of total display, the LG offers a 21:9 aspect ratio that is perfect for gaming. And while this isn’t a full 4K monitor – which is the ultimate best for gaming monitors – you still get a 2560 x 1080 resolution. You also get a 1ms response time and AMD Free Sync, both of which enhance gameplay by eliminating stuttering and motion blur.
Unfortunately, the 34UM69G-B only offers a 75 Hz refresh rate, which isn’t as fast as we’d like to see when on a monitor for gaming. This means you might see some blurring during, particularly fast-action moments. The Free-Sync monitor is fully adjustable, allowing you to tilt the monitor side to side and front to back, as well as adjust the height. You’ll only get a single HDMI port and a single Display Port, though, so you won’t be able to hook up many devices. Many ultra-wide monitors are curved gaming monitors, and this one isn’t, but we actually liked this more than the curved gaming monitors we tested. The curve is definitely “in” right now, but we were more than happy with the traditional approach the LG takes. Gamers will want to read best gaming monitors under $200.
#2 HP VH240a 24″ Monitor
Award: Honorable Mention/Best HP
WHY WE LIKE IT: With nearly nonexistent bevels and impressive picture quality at a budget price, the HP VH240a is a stellar option for anyone looking to improve their desk set up in their home office.
- Almost invisible bezels
- Wide viewing angles
- Image quality is crisp and vibrant
- Large base can be awkward with limited space
- No DisplayPort
- Onboard computer speakers offer mediocre sound quality
For starters, this HP computer monitor looks great with its edge-to-edge display and sleek black design. It’s subtle and understated, making it an excellent choice for your home office. The best part is that it’s also got the performance to back up its excellent design. When you get working, you’ll immediately notice the crisp image and vibrant color reproduction you should come to expect on full HD IPS monitors like this. Unfortunately, if you try to watch movies or play games with this LED-lit monitor, you might notice more motion blur than you’re used to due to its 60 Hz refresh rate.
However, wide viewing angles and accurate colors more than make up for the low refresh rate. It’s also nice to be able to adjust the monitor in the way you want. You can tilt it forward and back or flip it 90 degrees. Just be aware that the monitor doesn’t feature any DisplayPorts, so you’ll have to stick with HDMI cables, which we didn’t find to be too inconvenient. If you are a gamer who uses Sony’s console, the best gaming monitor for PS4 is worth a read.
#3 Acer R240HY 24″ Monitor
Award: Best Full HD IPS
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Acer R240HY is an excellent and versatile computer monitor that performs well in home office, business office or gaming applications. With its impressive color accuracy and evocative design at an extra-affordable price, the Acer is hard to beat.
- Colors look great
- Edge-to-edge display
- Matte-finished screen for less glare
- No DisplayPort or USB ports
- Tilt-only adjustments
- Not compatible with VESA mounts
The Acer R240HY is a monitor full HD 1080p display that performs really well when it comes to color accuracy, viewing angles and design quality…all at an affordable price under $200. It also features a matte-finished screen, which does really well in eliminating glare from background lighting, making it an excellent choice for home and business office applications. You may want to check out the best monitors for Xbox One X as well.
The overall design of the Acer is sturdy and durable. This is due in part to the fact that you can only tilt the screen forward or back a minimal amount. We consider this a win when you think about overall stability, but the lack of adjustability can make it difficult for some to find a comfortable viewing angle that works with their personal preferences. All in all, the Acer R240HY is one of the best 1080p monitors we’ve tested, which is why it made our list of top picks. And if you’re looking for gaming on Acer, you might want to check out the R240HY’s cousin, the Acer Predator XB1.
#4 Dell E2318Hx 23″ Monitor
Award: Best Value/Best for Work Offices
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Dell E318Hx might be the most common computer monitor you see in office spaces, and for good reason. It offers performance on a budget with low response times, wide viewing angles and low energy consumption when compared to other models.
- Low energy consumption
- Great response times
- Super affordable
- Limited color gamut
- No ergonomic adjustments
- Disappointing color accuracy
When you’re buying monitors for work, you want reliability, durability and performance…without having to pay a million bucks for it. That’s where the Dell E2318Hx comes in. There’s a reason this computer monitor is one of the most popular choices for businesses. It features a simple design that’s super easy to use and set up. Unfortunately, the display can’t be adjusted too much, but its image quality makes up for this oversight.
The Dell monitor is a full HD IPS panel that looks good for most applications. However, it doesn’t always offer the most accurate color representation, so if you’re using this for color-critical projects like photo editing, you might want to look elsewhere for a new monitor. For the average user, though, this monitor performs just fine, especially when you consider its low input lag. There’s no hesitation between a user’s action and that action being carried out on the screen. If you’re looking for budget monitors for your office, this is the one for you. Also read about the best 144Hz gaming monitors.
#5 Sceptre E205W-16003R 20″ Monitor
Award: Best Budget/Best 20 Inch
WHY WE LIKE IT: Are you looking for the best monitor you can buy for the absolutely lowest price? Then the Sceptre E205W-1600 is the monitor for you with its decent overall performance and versatile connection options.
- Very inexpensive
- DVI, HDMI, VGA inputs
- Good built-in speakers
- Not full HD resolution
- No DisplayPort
- Slow response times
When you buy a monitor that is priced as low as the Sceptre E205W-1600, you can always expect to win some and lose some. Sure, you might not get a gaming-quality display here, but it still provides decent response rates (5ms) and plenty of connectivity options (2x HDMI ports, 1x DVI port, 1x VGA port). The Sceptre offers a surprisingly stylish design without being too flashy and it looks good on any desk.
Unfortunately, you won’t get full HD with this display. The Sceptre only provides a resolution of 1600×900, which sits somewhere between 720p and 1080p. However, you’ll still get fairly decent color accuracy and a good picture, especially considering the price. If you’re on a extra-tight budget that absolutely cannot be broken, the Sceptre E205W-1600 is an excellent choice. These are some of the features that make up the best 4K gaming monitor.
Key Features of a Top Rated Monitor
- Widescreen Format: A wide screen is not necessary for a great computer experience…but it is a really big help, especially in a world now dominated by mobile devices with much of the same capability as a PC. What makes a desktop computer unique today? One of the answers is the desktop monitor, which can display your content bigger and better than any tablet or phone. Screens around 24 to 34 inches are optimal for the best experience – as long as you have the space to accommodate!
- Accessory and Connection Compatibility: Accessories are mildly important to TV screens (most computers favor HDMI these days), but should be a main priority when considering which computer monitor is right for you. Do you need HDMI, DisplayPort, or DVI? If you are buying a monitor and computer combo like the iMac, you should also make sure that the monitor has enough USB ports (including USB-C ports) and other connection options for your accessories.
- Ergonomics: No, we’re not talking about your keyboard. Specifically, we’re talking about the way the monitor moves. A good monitor will come with extensive ergonomic options in terms of viewing angles, swiveling, and tilting, all depending on where you set up your computer and what your overall desk layout will look like by the time you’re done.
- Speedy Response Times: This feature is particularly important for anyone who fancies themselves a PC gamer. Obviously, you need a computer screen that knows what it’s doing when it comes to response times and refresh rates, and the higher the number, the better. Today’s games demand the absolute fastest times possible in this department, so if you plan on doing a lot of online battling, be sure you get a screen that has adaptive sync (Nvidia’s G-Sync compatible or AMD’s FreeSync compatible) capabilities, along with response times under 4ms and maximum refresh rates 60Hz or higher (144Hz max).
- A Solid Warranty: There are plenty of warranty schemes out there that basically come down to getting more money out of you. Look instead for manufacturer warranties that cover at least a couple months of operation for your computer monitor, if not at least a year or longer.
Mistakes to Avoid
- Buying Too Much Screen: We know, our first piece of advice was to get a widescreen. But monitors can get expensive, especially if you really don’t need the screen size or resolution. Keep your needs in mind, and aim for lower prices rather than higher prices.
- Caring About Black Levels and Contrast Ratios: Yes, black levels really exist, but there’s no good way to measure them except to stare at the screen with your own eyeballs. Contrast ratios and similar claims are easily fabricated and mean very little to anyone outside of the marketing team. Just note which screens have “grayer” blacks, and try to stay away from those the best you can.
- Ignoring Your Graphics Card: The monitor is only half the story. You need a good graphics card for any sort of demanding monitor activity, so don’t buy a great monitor and forget about your GPU in the process.
- Most Important Features
- Several different types of panels exist for the best computer monitors, each a little different.
- Twisted nematic or TN panels have excellent response times for a budget gaming experience.
- Vertical alignment panels are known for their color and clarity, but they are also significantly more costly than many other types of panels.
- In-Plane Switching panels (IPS monitors) are a step above vertical alignment panels with their color accuracy, viewing angles, and brightness. However, they tend to be the most expensive and the least useful for action with their low response time and lag issues.
- Plane-line switching panels are made by Samsung, and are a new effort to create wide viewing angles and brightness with better affordability than other options.
- Due to some odd aspect ratio specs, the resolution on monitors can be a bit…different. Many 4K gaming monitors exist, but unlike TVs the resolution numbers can vary based on the screen shape.
- Optimally, anything above 1920 x 1080 is solid for 2021 models, including 2560 x 1440, 3440 x 1440, and 3840 x 2160 (4K)
- Remember that higher resolutions will create smaller text and images (the size of the screen remaining equal) so you may have to enlarge certain content on 4K displays.
- Response times refer to how quickly the monitor can update the image based on the input it receives.
- A great response time these days is anywhere from 5ms – 1ms, but will rarely go above that.
- Fast response times can indicate a robust screen for the average user, but they are most important to gamers interested in “twitch” games, or those who need a monitor that can double as an entertainment station.
- Look for HDMI connections and, if necessary, DisplayPort ports. HDMI has become the new standard for most of the best computer monitors, but alternatives like DisplayPort are popular in some circles. As always, look at the ports and cables you currently want before buying the monitor.
- If you want to use a feature like Nvidia’s G-Sync or AMD FreeSync, you’ll need a PC that has a DisplayPort 1.2 slot.
- Try to avoid monitors with only a DVI connection unless that’s all your PC supports.
- Yes, monitors have refresh rates, too. Choices are typically divided between 60Hz, 120Hz and 144Hz. A higher refresh rate is associated with smoother action on-screen with less juttering between frames.
- Opinions on refresh rate vary, but overall it’s thought that 144Hz monitors really do provide better pictures than lowly 60Hz options.
- Please keep in mind that consoles (PS4, Xbox One, etc.) only support 60Hz video, so if you want a monitor for your console, don’t pay more for a 144Hz version.
Computer Monitors FAQs
Which brand makes the best monitors?
There are many good PC monitor brands, but the most reliable are Dell, Acer, LG, ASUS and BenQ.
- Best picture quality: LG
- Best Home Office Monitor: HP
- Best For Business, Home Or Gaming: Acer
- Best For Business: Dell
Which monitor is best for home use?
These are the best monitors for those working from home.
- LG 34UM69G-B
- HP VH240a
- Acer R240HY Gaming Monitor
- Dell E2318Hx Business Monitor
- Sceptre E205W-16003R Gaming Monitor
What is the best cheap monitor?
These are the best cheap monitors you can buy
- HP VH240a. Best cheap monitor
- Acer R240HY. Best energy friendly monitor
- LG 34UM69G-B. Best cheap gaming monitor
- Dell E2318Hx. Best cheap monitor for viewing Netflix.
- Sceptre E205W-16003R. Best budget gaming monitor
What is the best monitor on the market?
The LG 34UM69G-B delivers an ultra-wide viewing experience that’s ideal for both gaming and work. It also has a super fast response rate and AMD Free Sync is on board for a smooth gaming experience.
Which monitor is better HP or LG?
The LG 34UM69G-B has a larger screen size which provides more detail on the monitor while gaming, whereas the HP VH240a has better budget price and is nearly bezel-free. Both are decent for gaming, business or entertainment.
What Else Should You Know About Computer Monitors
Our experts take a look at the latest monitors available and provide computer monitor reviews and computer accessory reviews to help you make up your mind on picking out the best computer monitors and make sure that you are getting exactly what you need. Computer monitors vary greatly when it comes to size, resolution, and extra feature: The best computer monitor for you will depend on what you want it for. Buying a new monitor is a big decision, so do yourself a favor and consult with Gadget Review before you make a purchase! Are you interested in the top gaming monitors or best 4K gaming monitors? Then larger screens with better response rates and graphics capabilities will be right up your alley. Do you want a work computer? Perhaps you need a screen that is large enough to hold two pages at once. From Asus, Acer, Samsung and HP to Veiwsonic and Apple, we'll take a look at what is happening in the monitor market and let you know!
There is currently a broad range of computer monitors on the market starting from many resolutions such as 1920 x 1080 monitors, 27-inch monitor or 4k monitors with ultra wide full hd refresh rates. Before heading out to buy one, it helps to have an expert who can help you make the right choice regarding the viewing angle, color accuracy, contrast ratios, ips panel, tn panel, response times and many other features . There are various computer monitor reviews online but Gadget Review remains the authoritative voice. With our reviews, you are assured of getting the finest among the ones touting as the best computer monitors available. The ideal monitor for you is primarily dependent on your use or gaming experience.
Computer monitors differ in three primary elements including their extra features like amd freesync, resolution, and size. Large screens generally work for those interested in gaming monitor as they have better graphics capabilities like graphics cards and response rates like 144hz refresh rate or others. Ultra hd monitor, on the other hand, will be ideal for those who want to peruse two pages simultaneously. These monitors are hence currently the leading choices for work computers.
Other than helping you pick the best monitor like Dell ultrasharp or other brands, Gadget Review will update you on the latest computer monitor trends. Currently, OLED monitors have primarily replaced LCD and LED monitor. The resolution for computer monitor has also expanded and now includes 4K resolution. On this, you can play games and watch the latest movies at top-notch resolution.